Let’s talk about how to eat healthy while traveling! Packing healthy snacks for a road trip or vacation can be so easy- there’s no need to overcomplicate it or settle for junk food on the road. I personally love to pack up some of my produce before I leave so it doesn’t go bad at home and fill my bag with nutrient-dense snacks. Here are some strategies whether you’re headed to the airport or on a road trip with your family.
Pack your first meal, start off strong
Healthy Eating Travel Day Example:
Pack a yogurt or cottage cheese, lean protein, veggies and fruit for the way out there!
Mini Travel Meal Plan:
Breakfast: Greek yogurt + clementine
Snack: 6-12 nuts + egg
Lunch: Turkey & veggie wrap + apple
Snack: Fresh cut veggies + hummus
These are easy to pack ahead of time, eat in the car or keep in a cooler.
Find grocery store options in the area
When visiting a new place, locate the nearest grocery store. Having healthy options and fresh foods available can be a huge help! Healthy options such as fruit, avocados, nuts/seeds or nut butter, dried fruit, olives, and dried meat or jerky are easy to keep in your room and can help keep you satisfied while traveling. You’ll save money, have more control over mindful portions, and stay prepared with your routine foods!
Request a mini-fridge for your hotel or bring a cooler for your car
When you make your reservation for a hotel, ask if you can get a small refrigerator. Every hotel has them for medical purposes. By having a fridge, there are so many foods and snacks you could have on hand including leftovers from eating out.
Upgrade your cooler and plan out some meals that are easy to travel with! I recommend hard-boiled eggs or frittatas, fruit, veggies, sandwich supplies, and always lots of water. It’s easy to pick up ice at gas stations and it can save time if you’re in a rush or trying not to sit down at a restaurant.
Bring “emergency” snacks that are going to keep you full
Be prepared with snacks you can keep in your car or work bag. I call these “emergency snacks”. The key for how to eat healthy while traveling is to avoid processed snacks that leave you hungry and unsatisfied. Protein- and fat-containing foods will fill you up and get you through those long conference days or being out and about exploring. So instead of empty-calorie snack packs, try things like nuts/seeds or nut butter packets, jerky, tuna packets, and real food bars. My favorite protein bars are RX and Epic Bars. Pair your protein and fat options with packable fruit like a couple of cuties or an apple for a balanced snack or small meal.
Don’t make these traveling snack mistakes
Skipping breakfast- Your first meal of the day is important, but it doesn’t need to be fancy. Opt for easy on-the-go options like an egg, yogurt, and nuts. If you know you are going to be hungry before lunch or plan to work out in the morning, make time to eat something!
Eating bigger restaurant portions- When eating out, look for lean protein and veggies on the menu. If you notice that portions are large, you could also try to order ½ of the portion or eat until you are satisfied and save the leftovers for the next day!
Social Influence- Remember that everyone has different health goals and food preferences, so don’t feel pressured to order like other people at your table. Order what sounds satisfying and appealing, while allowing you to feel your best while on vacation!
Stay hydrated- It’s easy to forget about drinking water when you’re busy having too much fun, so try to remember to keep a water bottle full and available or have bottles packed in your cooler or fridge.
Always practice good hygiene while traveling- Pack some sanitizer or wipes to clean your hands and eating space.
Here a few of my top favorite snack ideas for how to eat healthy while traveling:
RX Bars (I use the kid’s for snacks)
Nuts & Nut Butters (watch out for added sugars)
Jerky (I make my own but like this brand as well)
Smoked Salmon (I make my own but like this brand as well)
Dairy (may be able to get at the grocery store or at the breakfast buffet)
Fruits & Veggies
Homemade Portable Snack Recipes